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General Advising

Our office offers comprehensive advising services to all new and current UW students, returning former UW students, and prospective transfer students. We work with you to match your interests with opportunities at the UW, and help you to integrate your academic and career plans. There are several ways to work with our office.


30-minute advising appointments are available throughout the year during our business hours from 9am to 4:30pm, Monday through Friday. You can make an appointment through our online appointment scheduler or call (206) 543-2550 or stop by 141 Mary Gates Hall.

During Period 1 registration our calendars quickly become booked. To make sure to get an appointment, please feel free to schedule up to two weeks in advance.

You can also meet with our peer advisers in these locations across campus:

  • Commuter Commons (first floor of the HUB): Monday through Thursday from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.
  • Foster Library in Paccar Hall: Wednesdays from 4–6 p.m.
  • Odegaard Undergraduate Library: Tuesdays and Wednesdays from 7–9 p.m. 

Quick questions

Advisers are available in our suite on the first floor of Mary Gates Hall to answer questions on a drop-in basis from 9am to 6pm, Monday through Thursday, and from 9am to 4:30pm on Fridays.

We try to answer your questions in less than fifteen minutes. If they cannot be answered within this time, we will schedule an appointment with you. Some topics (e.g., choosing a major, reinstatement) require deeper conversations, and are therefore better addressed via a 30-minute appointment.

During peak registration times the office becomes very busy and you may encounter a wait to see an adviser on a drop-in basis. Our lobby is comfortable and you are welcome to bring your school work or engage in other activities while you wait.

Telephone & email

If you have a question, but getting to our suite is not convenient for you, an adviser or a staff person will try to help you over the phone at (206) 543-2550 between 9am and 4:30pm, Monday through Friday. 

Quick questions can also be asked and answered over email. Appointments cannot be scheduled through this email account. Your email will be are answered by an adviser within 1-2 business days, or forwarded to the University office we think will best be able to help you.

Other types of appointments

To make any of these types of appointments you can use the online scheduler, or call our office at (206) 543-2550. You can also stop by during business hours and make an appointment in person.

Individualized Studies

Prior to your appointment, please review the Individualized Studies website and the Learning Plan Guide.

Low scholarship

If you are currently on academic warning or probation, please complete the academic self-assessment survey prior to making an appointment.

Military & veterans

Students who currently serve or have served in the U.S. military are welcome to work directly with our office and to schedule 30-minute appointments. If you are a veteran and just need to obtain a signature on your quarterly schedule for the purposes of receiving VA benefits, an appointment may not be necessary; you can stop by our office during regular office hours and an adviser will be able to assist you on a drop-in basis. 


If you have not yet declared a major, or have declared a major in the College of Arts & Sciences, and have been dropped for low scholarship, you will need to work with an adviser who will help you file a petition for reinstatement. EOP, SSS, and CAMP-affiliated students should meet with an OMA&D adviser. For majors outside the College of Arts & Science, please check with the departmental adviser.

Returning student

You are a returning student if you have been absent from the University for more than one quarter (summers excluded).

National Student Exchange

These appointments are for current NSE students only. Prospective NSE students should review the UW's NSE website prior to making an appointment.

Our people

Academic counselors

In general, all our advisers work with beginning students exploring all majors. In addition, most of our advisers have special expertise in one or more areas of study.

Ahnya Redman

When I was an undergraduate at the University of Alaska-Fairbanks, I felt like there wasn't enough time. I wanted a taste of everything — Native American poetry, chemistry, anthropology, history — but I eventually settled on a Biology major (after several changes of mind). I wasn't really done with school when I graduated, so I went on to earn a Master's in Entomology. Yes, that's bug science, although I studied butterflies, which are in a class by themselves, if you ask me. After that, I got a PhD in Ecology from Penn State and taught biology for about 12 years, first at Penn State and then at West Virginia University. I've been advising for almost three years, and I cherish the opportunity to help students achieve their goals and get the most out of their educational experience.

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Chanira Reang Sperry

During my undergraduate studies, I was very confused. I couldn't decide upon one major and I found myself constantly changing my interests from Philosophy to Political Science to Marine Biology to Psychology, and then eventually I decided upon English Literature for my major with help from my Academic Adviser. After graduation, I worked as a Project Manager for an international fishing company. I missed the university environment and decided to become an Academic Adviser, so I pursued a Master's degree from the UW College of Education, where I studied Educational Leadership and Policy Studies. I have enjoyed advising students for more than a decade.

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Christina Kerr

As an undergraduate I studied at the University of Vermont and discovered that I really enjoyed a few of the political science I took in my sophmore year. I enjoyed looking at different perspectives on local and world events and developing my own informed understanding along with writing research papers. I eventually decide on that for my major and as you can see, I now have a career that is largely unrelated to the study of politics. However, the skills I learned in college still translate and helped me along the way to a job I love.

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Donna Sharpe

I graduated from the UW with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Sociology and did my graduate work in higher education at Seattle University, earning a Master of Arts in Education. Since then, I have been a counselor, teacher and adviser in the community college system prior to joining the UW advising staff. Like many undergrad students that I work with here at the UW, I changed my mind about a major multiple times before discovering a passion for sociology that was sparked by several amazing professors.

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Hope Howard

As an undergraduate I studied here at the University of Washington. In my first year here, I chose to study Aquatic & Fishery Sciences. During my sophomore year, I began to realize that my true passion was not fish but, instead, people! I realized that both my job as a Resident Adviser and my extra-curricular activities were focused on mentoring and helping members of the community. Although I first thought nursing would be a great opportunity to help those who need it most, volunteer experience taught me that nursing wasn’t a perfect fit either. Eventually, I found the related field of Public Health, which allowed me to study people from multiple perspectives — biology, anthropology, psychology, sociology — and to examine how (among other things) education can impact one’s life. Through self-reflection and experiential learning (I held two jobs in advisory roles), I soon found myself on the path to advising. One of the best parts about working in advising at UW is the diverse student population that I get to work with and learn from every day. I love that my job keeps me on my toes and provides opportunities to continuously improve myself. I am excited to help guide students in the process of developing meaning and purpose in their education at my alma mater.

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Jim Scott

I studied Zoology and Genetics as an undergraduate student at Oregon State University. I went immediately into a graduate program and earned a Master’s degree in Radiation Biology. I wasn’t exactly sure what I wanted to do with my life at this point, but thought it might be worthwhile to actually be employed, so I took a year-long program through the Veteran’s Hospital in Portland, OR and received my certification as a Nuclear Medicine Technologist.  I worked in that capacity for a bit, and when my wife returned to school, I took a position as a research assistant in a biochemistry lab investigating the circular-dichroism properties of proteins (no nuclear medicine jobs were open in the area).  Based upon my background, I took the next logical step, went back to school, and earned a PhD in Horticulture.  I taught introductory chemistry, biology and biochemistry at two colleges in western New York State, did a one year stint as a high school biology teacher in Buffalo, NY, and taught at a few colleges in the Seattle area.  I have been an academic adviser for almost 15 years.

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Joyce Fagel

Just like some of you, I changed my major a few times. I started as a pre-medical school student, then studied one year of physical therapy in the Netherlands before I came to the United States and settled on a psychology major at Augsburg College in Minneapolis. After that I completed a Master’s Degree in Counseling and Student Personnel Psychology at the University of Minnesota. Now I've been advising pre-health and science students for many years, so I am able to combine all my interests! I encourage you not to forget that learning at its best is challenging, adventurous, and fun. For example, one of my most memorable and valuable classes was Acting 101 which I registered for on a whim. I had never done any acting before and I was scared on the stage. It became my worst grade, but I came to enjoy that class, made new friends, and it helped me get over my fear of public speaking. The U of Washington offers many opportunities and challenges, and as advisers we are here to help you understand and chart your unique pathway, so come see us.

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Julie Larsen

As an undergraduate student I moved from pre-med, to math education, to philosophy, before finally settling on psychology with a minor in economics from Knox College in Galesburg, IL. I was heavily involved with campus life, including student government, four years of swimming and water polo, and working as an admissions tour guide. I believe that your time at UW should be full of exploration and adventure, with all of your experiences — inside and outside the classroom, on and off campus — working together to create the story you'll tell at graduation.

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Kurt Xyst

As an undergraduate I studied at the University of New Mexico and eventually found myself "in the grasp" of philosophy (major) and comparative religion (minor). My initial impulse to focus on business didn't survive my freshman year and was quickly scrapped after my first serious encounter with the ancient Greeks. I did my graduate work here at the University of Washington emphasizing the philosophy of education and the nature of higher education. My current research deals with the meaning and purpose of university education, something you might be wondering about yourself!

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Leah L. Panganiban

As an undergraduate I studied at Villanova University and majored in sociology and communications. I did my graduate work at Claremont Graduate University and here at the University of Washington focusing on the social and cultural foundations of higher education. My current research deals with Filipino American second-year students’ college experiences.

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May Lim

I can still remember the excitement of my freshman year at Texas Tech University. Like many of you, I was unsure about what to major in, so I dabbled in a few areas from education to business until I found my niche in Studio Art in my Junior year. By exploring different fields, I learned so much about myself, my interests, strengths, values, and goals. This process of learning, reflection, and self-discovery is an exciting (though sometimes scary) part the college experience! Influenced by my experiential learning activities outside of the classroom and studio, I pursued a Master’s degree in Education, focusing on how diverse student populations experience higher education.  My thesis utilized the Arts-Based Research methodology of Photovoice to explore the experiences of transgender college students in American Higher Education. I look forward to working with you as you navigate your own unique Husky Experience here at UW!

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Tim McCoy

Having really enjoyed my two anthropology courses at Whatcom Community College, I chose to major in anthropology when I transferred to Iowa State University. Because I wanted to learn more, I earned a Master of Arts degree in anthropology at Western Washington University, focusing on Ethnohistory and Native American Studies. That there are so many ways of life and types of knowledge, experience and perspective are insights I draw upon every day as an academic adviser. My doctoral dissertation, in the UW College of Education, focused on how staff, from a variety of educational institutions, approach this multifaceted business of undergraduate academic advising.

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Peer advisers

Peer advisers are junior and senior UW students who receive extensive, ongoing training from professional advisers and generally have one or two years of experience working with students as an orientation leader, resident adviser, or other peer advising position on campus.